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Best of Savannah: Media 2013
WRHQ 105.3 FM won Best Local Radio Station

Best Local Facebook Page

Best Local Twitter Feed

Best Local Instagram Feed

Visit Savannah

Visit Savannah President Joe Marinelli assures us that the social media efforts at Visit Savannah are a collaborative team effort. But every team needs a quarterback, and Amy Brock is the on-field leader of the utterly dominant social media offense at Visit Savannah.

This was one of Visit Savannah's most virally shared Facebook pics
This was one of Visit Savannah's most virally shared Facebook pics

We asked Amy a few trade secrets:

What do you think is the secret to Visit Savannah's social media success?

Amy Brock: Honesty and a sense of humor. And that I will pretty much talk to anyone at pretty much any hour of the day.

 Can you name a few particularly highly shared links/tweets?

Amy Brock: Remember that Mumford & Sons concert rumor a few weeks ago? I totally got punked with that one (first time ever!) It spread on Twitter so crazy fast! 50+ RTs in less than 2 minutes. Pro tip: ALWAYS own your errors in the Twitterverse.

What content seems to work best for you guys?

Amy Brock: On Facebook, our images are especially popular. Anything with the Savannah River (particularly the view from Rocks on the Roof) or Tybee Island — or if you share a photo of a cocktail in a to-go cup.

Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil or Forrest Gump trivia — always a winner.

Anyone get chippy in the comments?

Amy Brock: It's rare anymore that I have to referee a debate on our Facebook page, but when I do, it is almost always about fried chicken (Paula Deen vs. Mrs. Wilkes.) While I don't really get why people feel the need to call each other (and Paula) names in such a public forum, I appreciate their passion for fried chicken.

Be honest: How much of your success is Savannah and how much is Visit Savannah? Heh.

Amy Brock: Our social media presence would not be what it is without local support. Our primary messaging is geared towards attracting visitors, but a large part of our Fan base is local. Local participation in conversations — especially on Twitter — is very relevant to what we do. Travelers are using social media in hopes of obtaining insider information like finding out about the restaurants or bars where locals go. I try to share as much content from as many sources as possible. I rely heavily on our local Twitter and Facebook community for information. A successful voice for one of us, is a successful voice for Savannah as a whole. — Jim Morekis

Runner-up, Facebook: Old Savannah Tours

Runner-up, Twitter: Connect Savannah

Runner-up, Instagram: ShopSCAD

Best Local Radio Station

WRHQ 105.3 FM

It's been 21 years since New York radio veteran Jerry Rogers put WRHQ — Q1053.FM — on the air in Savannah. Then, as now, the programming focused on "classic rock," in a hits-and-deep-cuts format designed by Rogers himself, with no jingles, no annoying "aren't I funny" chatter, and no talking over the intros and outros of songs.

Not surprisingly, the station is a huge favorite of its designated demographic, those 30 and older, and slightly upscale.

Not that Rogers and his (tiny) staff don't play the "new" stuff. They just like to weave it around the classics.

"We really try to play what works well with the audience," Rogers explains. "We don't work with record companies, so we don't have that kind of pressure. We play what makes sense for our audience. Most of it is library-based music, but at least 20, 25 percent is current music."

Rogers, Brady McGraw and Lyndy Brannen are familiar voices, if not faces, in the Hostess City.

"Another thing I think that works very uniquely for us is the fact that we're local," Rogers says. "We have lots of continuity — Brady and Lyndy and myself, between us, we've been on the radio in Savannah for over 100 years. That's combined! We like Savannah, and I think it comes across.

"For radio to be viable in a community, it has to be local. I just think you've got to be all over the weather, the traffic, the lost dogs, the community announcements and things of that nature."

You won't hear any of that pre-fab syndicated, good-for-the-whole-world stuff on Savannah's WRHQ.

"Syndicated programs are fine," Rogers adds. "They're entertaining. But they're not for us." — Bill DeYoung

Runner-up: WSVH FM 91.1

Best Local TV Anchor

Sonny Dixon, WTOC

WTOC's lead on-air man and news director brings folksy charm and years of real-world local contacts and experience to his market-leading broadcasts.

Runner-up:Jody Chapin, WTOC

Best Local Sports Anchor

Frank Sulkowski, WJCL/WTGS

This perennially popular winner at WJCL/Fox 28 takes this category pretty much every year due to his vibrant, fun on-air presence and his encyclopedic interest in sports at all levels, from the pros to high school.

Runner-up: Rick Snow, WSAV

Best Local Meteorologist

Pat Prokop, WTOC

Easily one of the best local TV meteorologists one could imagine, tiny Savannah — 100th largest media market in the country — is truly lucky to still be able to enjoy his talent.

Runner-up: Kris Allred, WSAV

Best Local Columnist

Best Local Blogger

Bill Dawers

A twice weekly column in the local daily and an energetically promoted personal blog, Savannah Unplugged, makes Dawers the King of All Local Media.

Runner-up, Columnist & Blogger: Jessica Leigh Lebos

Best Local Website

Damn straight we are, especially after a dramatic site rebuild/upgrade and a kickin' mobile version.


Best Local Radio Personality

Kotter, WFXH 106.1 FM

Holding down the Work Release Program from 3-7 p.m., this perennially popular jock with our readers is also the station's programming director and operations manager.

Runner-up: Bill Edwards

Best Local Radio Show

Kidd Kraddick in the Morning

This nationally syndicated show is based in Texas and airs on WAEV 97.3 each weekday morning.

Runner-up: Lex & Terry

Best Talk Radio Station

WSVH FM 91.1

From "Fresh Air" to "All Things Considered" to "Talk of the Nation," your local NPR affiliate brings news & issues to the forefront without all the name-calling and invective.

Runner-up: 1290 WTKS

Best Local TV Commercial

Mike Hostilo

The production values on these little videos are actually pretty decent. It's quite a body of work when you get 'em all together.

Runner-up: O.C. Welch

Best Local App

St. Patrick's Day App

The upgraded Morning News holiday-focused app includes check-ins, photo/video sharing, and practical info like parking,

Runner-up: Parker's App